What should I do if I don’t hear anything after an interview?

Have you ever been to an interview and then found yourself waiting for longer than you'd like before you get a yes or a no? It can happen – but it's important not to let it get to you…

Next time you're waiting to hear back from an interview, keep these tips in mind.

Give it a day or two

When you're in the interview, ask when you're likely to hear back about the job. The people you've been chatting to will likely give you an idea of when they think they'll know who they've chosen. Keep this in mind – you don't want to be sending off emails asking whether they've made up their mind before the time they've given you has come.  

However, if they've named a day and it comes, don't let your fingers get too itchy. It's probably best to leave two days or so before you ask for an update. The reason? People are busy and will have a lot of jobs to do which don't relate to recruiting for this particular role. Getting in touch for an update is a good idea, but leave them some leeway first.

Keep it polite

You may end up getting an email or communication from your potential employer telling you the outcome of the interview, or one saying that you have a little longer to wait. It goes without saying that you should keep things polite throughout the process of contacting the employer and reacting to what they say. It may be that you're anxious to hear what's going to happen, but resist any comments that could be read as critical or express your dissatisfaction at waiting. Being super-polite is the order of the day with this sort of thing.

What to do if there's no response

If you don't hear anything via email it could be that you have not secured the job. It's unfortunate, but it is sometimes the case that employers will interview people and then only give a response to those who are successful – even though, given the effort candidates go to in preparing for and attending an interview, this is clearly very undesirable

If time has passed and you have not heard from your potential employer at all via the channel you have been using, it may be time to switch channel if you want a definite answer. For example, try getting the person who interviewed you on the phone if you have been emailing them.

Beware of missed communications

It's always best to check things like whether you've been checking an email address that isn't the one listed on your CV, have left a typo in your phone number or even whether an email might have ended up in junk. It sounds simple, but sometimes what seems like lack of communication from an employer can in the end be down to this sort of thing! 

Berkeley Scott is a specialist hospitality recruitment agency.